The annual Edmonton Pride Parade made its way down Whyte Avenue Saturday afternoon for the 35th anniversary of the event that aims to promote acceptance.
Normally held downtown, the festival returned to Old Strathcona, where organizers say the first march took place in 1980.
— Kirby Bourne (@Kirby_Bourne) June 6, 2015
Families lined the street including Tracey Woodburn and her two kids. She says it’s important to her family to attend, despite some groups saying the parade isn’t for families.
“People all came from families did they? This is our normal life and we’re happy to be a part of it,” she says. “It’s beautiful, and it’s a parade, and it’s colourful, and it’s going to be a part of our family, and we’re just here to enjoy everyone.”
Mayor Don Iveson took part again this year and was in good spirits on a busy weekend in his city.
“This is going to be one of the high-water marks in Edmonton’s history,” Iveson says. “A great conference of 2000 mayors and councillors is in town, we’ve got Pride on a beautiful day like today, and then a billion people are going to watch women’s sport history this afternoon I think. What a phenomenal day in our city.”
Federal Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau is in Edmonton this weekend and took part in the event. During the parade he said the energy was electric.
“This is my very first time in Edmonton’s pride and I am so impressed with the energy, the intensity of it, and I can’t wait to come back next year.”
Other familiar faces in the parade included MP Linda Duncan, Premier Rachel Notley and her NDP caucus and Edmonton Oilers’ goalie Ben Scrivens.
“All these people are supporters of the Oilers, whether straight, gay, trans it doesn’t matter they support us on the ice,” Scrivens says. “It’s the least we can do, and we’re really happy to be able to, support them off the ice.”
The pride festivities continue through the afternoon at Strathcona Park and End of Steel Park until 6:00 p.m. Saturday. (kb)
— Chelsea Draeger (@ChelseaDraeger) June 6, 2015
— Jenny Scrivens (@JenScrivs) June 6, 2015
— Dr. Kristopher Wells (@KristopherWells) June 6, 2015
— Duncan Wojtaszek (@phendrana) June 6, 2015
— Chelsey (@chelseyswank) June 6, 2015
— Gibby Davis (@gibbydavis) June 6, 2015